Name of the project: Soba Sassy
Size of the plot: Spread over 650 sq metres
Date of completion: 2023
Design Firm: A Square Designs
Principal architect: Ajay Arya
Photographer: Atul Pratap Chauhan
The primary goal for A Square Designs while designing Soba Sassy, a pan Asian restaurant and lounge in Kolkata, was to create a vibrant and memorable space with picturesque interiors that are evocative of East Asia. The space accordingly brings together a medley of colours, textures, art and design elements that are inspired by the region to create an immersive and atmospheric dining experience. “Just like the cuisine it offers, the restaurant interiors create a serene, lush and creative world heightened by the inclusion of Asian flora and fauna,” says Ajay Arya, interior designer and founder of A Square Designs.
The space spans 650 square metres and is divided into two areas: Soba, the dining area, and Sassy, the bar and lounge area.
The playful mood of the space is set at the entryway, which features hand painted murals over black walls and bright neon signs.
This leads to Soba, the primary dining area, which has been designed with an energetic colour palette including magenta, chrome yellow, bottle green and fuchsia. Assortments of faux flowers adorn the walls adding to the vibrant ambience. “We have also introduced bright shades with artworks, upholstery, flooring, and lights. The expanse is stunning and the space has a bright backdrop adorned with our design sensibility,” says Arya. Material choices for the restaurant include terrazzo-like tiles and microfibre, leather and velvet upholstery.
Soba opens out to the other area, Sassy, which houses the bar and lounge, and features a range of design elements that lend character, such as the hand-painted wall murals of flora and a grand bar that features brass arches. Tall wall installations that depict dancing pandas contribute to the playful atmosphere of the space. “The intention was to set a happy mood throughout the interiors and create a space for all kinds of celebrations,” Arya says.
A massive faux cherry blossom tree strategically placed within the Sassy bar area heightens the glamour and the surreal quotient of the space . It also draws attention to the 14-ft floor-to-ceiling height. “It was a bit of a challenge to do justice to the vast volume,” notes Arya. The tree branches stretch out over the bar area from a height, making use of this volume. A full length mirror further amplifies the sense of space.
The Sassy bar area comes with what Ajay Arya calls a ‘surprise element’, the Pink Room with mosaic tiles in pink. This playful space includes bright pink and purple booths, an oval bathtub filled with pink balloons, as well as a neon wall sign, capturing the quirky and playful design ethos of the entire restaurant. “It’s also a fabulous backdrop for photographs and selfies – highly instagrammable like they say.”
Story by Sridevi Nambiar